Sick as a Pierrot (1)

This is is a Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers story. Thanks to Priceless Joy for hosting and to Pixabay for providing the photo. If you’re so minded, you’ll probably note that this story is 36 words over the limit. I have tried to pare it down, but the shortest version I managed was still nearly 200 words, and missing something; if I’m honest, I’d have preferred to give these characters even more room to breathe. There’s also a mildly off-colour joke, that I couldn’t bring myself to take out, and a couple of other weak gags which I’ve kept because they have sentimental value. Hope you don’t mind. Thanks for reading.

(1) Dear pedants, I know the t is silent.

“Are you really going out with that clown?” her girlfriends would say, mocking smiles not quite hiding their pity. Claudia knew not to let it get to her. Biffo was the first guy in circus school to pass his driving test and the stories about the size of a man’s feet were true, after all.
Biffo could never quite bring himself to accept that the most luxuriantly bearded lady in the circus could be interested in him. He wouldn’t believe her when she told him that she found Alphonso the fire-eater insufferably smug, or that the cat smell put her off Clifford the lion-tamer. So when Alphonso, who’d always carried a torch for her, told Biffo her ardour was waning, he agreed to a drag race, hoping to win her back. 

Alphonso insisted Biffo go first in his miniature motorcar. Biffo only realised too late that his rival had tampered with the brakes. He tried to bail, but his oversized feet got caught behind the accelerator pedal. The last thing he heard was his horn playing La Cucharacha.
Heartbroken, Claudia married Alphonso on the rebound. To this day, he tries to convince himself they’re happy, but he’s never been able to overlook the fact their firstborn son wears size 23 shoes.



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13 responses to “Sick as a Pierrot (1)

  1. So… the size of the feet is true and the baby is, of course, Biffo’s baby! Poor Alphonso, she never really loved him anyway. Cute story! I thoroughly enjoyed reading this!

  2. Oh that is clever and funny

  3. Very imaginative and funny. The old truck reminded you of a clown car. It is funny that the bearded lady’s friends say are you going out with that clown? and she is really going out with a clown. What is the title about? pierrot?

    • Thanks for reading. A pierrot is quite a difficult thing to describe, they’re sort of half way between a clown and a mime. I presume they’re french in origin, or maybe italian. The phrase ‘sick as a pierrot’ is a play on ‘sick as a parrot’ which was popular with british footballers in the late 20th century. Glad you liked it.

  4. Great story. Creative and very funny. Last line wonderful!

    • Thank you. Pleased you liked the last line as I had to edit that a lot to get anywhere near the word limit.

      • The word limit is difficult, but it makes you a better writer over time, learning to only put what’s only necessary in your story. Although, depending on who is hosting the challenge, some hosts are more flexible with the word count. Honestly, sometimes I can’t make my story shorter. Sometimes you need all 225 words. Great job!

  5. I love this story. If Alphonso tampered with the brakes, then it serves him right to have to live with his wife loving another man and a son with 23 shoe size. Well done

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